Advanced

Fledging in altricial birds : Parental manipulation or sibling competition?

Nilsson, Jan Åke LU and Svensson, Mikael (1993) In Animal Behaviour 46(2). p.379-386
Abstract

In altricial birds, the period of parental investment covers three distinctly separated phases: Incubation, feeding of nestlings, and feeding of fledglings in the family group. The transition between the latter two phases occurs when the brood fledges and leaves the nest. To investigate which party, parents or offspring, initiates nest leaving, different-aged broods were swopped between nestboxes in two passerine bird species, the marsh tit, Parus palustris, and the pied flycatcher, Ficedula hypoleuca. Parents did not try to manipulate nestlings into nest leaving; fledging was thus independent of the level of parental investment. Instead, fledging occurred when one of the nestlings, which had reached a certain threshold size, left the... (More)

In altricial birds, the period of parental investment covers three distinctly separated phases: Incubation, feeding of nestlings, and feeding of fledglings in the family group. The transition between the latter two phases occurs when the brood fledges and leaves the nest. To investigate which party, parents or offspring, initiates nest leaving, different-aged broods were swopped between nestboxes in two passerine bird species, the marsh tit, Parus palustris, and the pied flycatcher, Ficedula hypoleuca. Parents did not try to manipulate nestlings into nest leaving; fledging was thus independent of the level of parental investment. Instead, fledging occurred when one of the nestlings, which had reached a certain threshold size, left the nest in order to approach the parents and obtain additional feedings at the expense of its siblings. It is suggested that the fledging time of altricial birds is determined by energetic considerations and by sibling competition. Since fledging also represents the juvenile's transition from an inactive to an active party in the parent-offspring interaction, it is also to be considered as an escalation of the parent-offspring conflict.

(Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Animal Behaviour
volume
46
issue
2
pages
379 - 386
publisher
Elsevier Ltd
external identifiers
  • scopus:0027865972
ISSN
0003-3472
DOI
10.1006/anbe.1993.1200
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
14742e61-1ee7-4453-817e-30e41209b822
date added to LUP
2019-06-10 11:39:41
date last changed
2020-01-13 01:58:53
@article{14742e61-1ee7-4453-817e-30e41209b822,
  abstract     = {<p>In altricial birds, the period of parental investment covers three distinctly separated phases: Incubation, feeding of nestlings, and feeding of fledglings in the family group. The transition between the latter two phases occurs when the brood fledges and leaves the nest. To investigate which party, parents or offspring, initiates nest leaving, different-aged broods were swopped between nestboxes in two passerine bird species, the marsh tit, Parus palustris, and the pied flycatcher, Ficedula hypoleuca. Parents did not try to manipulate nestlings into nest leaving; fledging was thus independent of the level of parental investment. Instead, fledging occurred when one of the nestlings, which had reached a certain threshold size, left the nest in order to approach the parents and obtain additional feedings at the expense of its siblings. It is suggested that the fledging time of altricial birds is determined by energetic considerations and by sibling competition. Since fledging also represents the juvenile's transition from an inactive to an active party in the parent-offspring interaction, it is also to be considered as an escalation of the parent-offspring conflict.</p>},
  author       = {Nilsson, Jan Åke and Svensson, Mikael},
  issn         = {0003-3472},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {01},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {379--386},
  publisher    = {Elsevier Ltd},
  series       = {Animal Behaviour},
  title        = {Fledging in altricial birds : Parental manipulation or sibling competition?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/anbe.1993.1200},
  doi          = {10.1006/anbe.1993.1200},
  volume       = {46},
  year         = {1993},
}